Intended for healthcare professionals


GMC guidance on withholding life prolonging treatment

BMJ 2003; 326 doi: (Published 29 May 2003) Cite this as: BMJ 2003;326:1215
  1. Hilary Thomas (, chair, standards committee
  1. General Medical Council, London W1N 6JE

    EDITOR—Kmietowicz reports that advice on withholding food and water breaks the law.1 The GMC's guidance does not allow doctors to withdraw food and water from patients with the intent of causing or hastening their death ( We believe such actions to be unlawful and unethical.

    The guidance covers the situation where—while a patient's death is …

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